Ken Miller, Police Chief in Greenville, South Carolina, is pleased that the police officers should hopefully receive body cameras by the end of this year, but he is also quite far-sighted and presented to the City Council a strategic plan that covers the coming five years.
His major request is for a new police station since his department and the Greenville County Sheriff’s Office have had to share the Greenville Law Enforcement Center for years. That has meant having to spread out and “play merry-go-round” with different rooms. He suggested leasing so that it could be accomplished sooner rather than waiting to build, which would make it later.
Chief Miller also wants to raise officers’ starting salary since his department’s current starting salary is $32,000 while it is $36,000 at the Greenville County Sheriff’s Office and $37,000 at the South Carolina Highway Patrol. He has been working with the HR director and the city budget director to address this issue.
Another of his goals is to increase the number of minority police officers since only 11 percent of the officers are African-American. However, he has found the pool of candidates limited even though they go to job fairs, black universities and colleges, the African-American community, and have even reached out through NAACP.
As the San Francisco’s District Attorney, George Gascon recently made criticisms concerning the police department that he has been too close. According to Gascon, he believes that there are cases of racism and homophobia in the department. Gascon claims that this may be evidently seen in the text messages the police had been sending to each other. One may wonder why Gaston makes these serious allegations to the police department yet he has been the chief of the police during his time in the police department.
Garry Dalagnes, who is the former president of the Police Office Association (POA), presented an affidavit showing how Gascon allegedly set up a task force to investigate the Police Department on cases related to homophobia and racism. Exactly a few days after Gascon’s appearance during the panel, Dalagnes presented his declaration while testifying that the police union can influence a police commission or the police chief to implement reforms.
The former POA president further claims that George Gascon made a false testimony before the panel, insisting that they were all lies and lacked thorough evidence to prove what he meant. The district Attorney’s weaknesses are seen since he failed to look into these allegations when he was the chief of police.
As far as the police department is concerned, Gascon firmly believe that these assertions can negatively affect the police department when enforcing policies. He added that the law enforcing processes would be derailed in one way or the other. The other allegation made was concerning how Gascon promoted some few African American during his tenure. Dalagnes wondered if a proper due process was considered in the qualifications of the captains in the various ranks.
The former president claimed during Gascon’s time in the police department. He believed that biased treatment based on gender, racial, sexual orientation infiltrated the office. Therefore, Dalagnes vehemently complain that Gascon paid little attention to such issues and never raise his eyebrows to rectify the weaknesses in the department. It is rumored that Union believes George Gascon was rescued from the panel he made.
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